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A few things to get the ball rolling.

English Paper Piecing is all done by hand - so you don't need a sewing machine only basic hand sewing skills are needed - the more time spent hand sewing the better you get (as with everything).

English Paper Piecing is not for everybody - it can take time to make large projects - and smaller projects will take longer than to make by machine but it is a great hobby to do in front of the TV, on public transport and on car trips - and is a great alternative to knitting and crochet as a handcraft.

As a complete beginner in Patchwork or a bit unsure as to whether you will enjoy making a large quilt (or might get frustrated or bored)  - I would recommend starting off with a small project - a pincushion, a cushion, table runner or as the basis for another fabric based project eg a bag or plastic bag keeper/dispenser (see Projects).

Patchwork as a hobby can become expensive - due to the fact that buying a reasonable (or if you become addicted to patchwork vast) amount of good quality cotton patchwork/quilting fabric soon adds up.  So if you are a complete beginner and will have to buy fabric with which to make a project - it is also a good reason to start with a smaller project.

I know that many people have tried 'traditional' EPP and started making a Grandmother's Garden or hexagon based quilt and soon got bored or frustrated and put the project into a box - and there it remains.  Hopefully with the blocks and projects I have planned this won't happen.

If you are still interested in trying out EPP - the next decision to make is how many colours/fabrics do you want to use?

2,3,4,5 or more: a scrap quilt.

All the blocks I have chosen can be made with as few or as many fabrics as you want.  Even though I have made 'scrappy' quilts before I now prefer using the same fabrics and colour palette for projects.

There are a few ways to pick your colours and fabrics; 

  • taking note of colour combinations in everyday life eg I noticed an interesting colour combination on a woman at the supermarket the other day .

  • if making a cushion, quilt, quillow (lap quilt which folds up to be a pillow) to match your decor you could choose the predominant colours in your decor and perhaps add a contrasting colour.

  • search the internet - there are quite a few great sites eg Design Seeds, The Inspired Bride.

  • or just simply choose your favourite colour or colours. (I have made quite a few projects in purple as it is my favourite colour.)

If you don't want to draft the pattern up yourself - send me an email - tell me which block/s and the size you would like to make and I can draft it up for you send you a PDF and then you will be able to print off as many copies as you want.

Also any feedback or questions about anything - feel free to get in touch.


Patchwork-a-long Part 1: blocks with 2 colours/fabrics.

Patchwork-a-long Part 2: blocks with 3 colours/fabrics.

Patchwork-a-long Part 3: blocks with 4 colours/fabrics.

Patchwork-a-long Part 4: block with 6 colours/fabrics.


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